German romantic composer, organist, musicologist and teacher August Gottfried Ritter was born on 25 August 1811 in Erfurt. His teachers included Johann Nepomuk Hummel, Ludwig Berger and August Wilhelm Bach. He was a friend and contemporary of Franz Liszt.
He was organist first in Merseburg and then Magdeburg, where he died on 26 August 1885.
He was critical, in his writing, of the excessive ornamentation used by Renaissance organ composers, and is best remembered today for his own organ music, which includes four sonatas.